• Rediscover The Motivation In Your Staff

    Ever heard that saying A Business Is Only As Good As Its People? It’s so incredibly relevant in our clinics, because not only do we need to make sure we’re hiring the right staff, we also need to provide them with the right tools and resources to keep them engaged in their work.

    I get how tricky this can sometimes be. There have been a couple occasions where I’ve popped my head around the corner to check in on everyone at reception, only feel an ‘air’ of pungent de-motivation floating about. It’s happened to all of us, that feeling of discouragement or hindrance preventing us from doing our jobs to the best of our abilities. It’s sad, and I don’t like seeing it amongst my staff.

    So how can we boost motivation for our amazing staff when things are looking a bit down? I’ve put together a list of strategies you can take to bolster employee engagement; a list of ideas that have worked for me and for my incredible team!

     

    Show Your Appreciation

    Showing your appreciation can be as simple as giving a gift card or small token around a special occasion or holiday season; celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and outside-of-work accomplishments; or go public with appreciation by featuring them on your social media account.

    Also too, remember that ‘Thank You’ notes are not dead. In the digital world, an actual hardcopy note, even on a post-it, goes a long way to making someone feel noticed and acknowledged for their work.

    Giving Feedback & Addressing Opportunities

    When staff are left to their own devices, things can become really deflating. They don’t know where they stand when it comes to whether or not the work they’re doing is right, and whether or not they feel valued.

    It’s all good and well to give your employees positive feedback, but when there’s no follow through with suggestions on how to move forward, it’s almost like there’s no validation in what you’ve said.

    So ensure you give both positive and negative feedback, because believe it or not, that improves individual performance. To be effective, it should be intentional, constructive and engaging, as well as timely and specific because it provides direction and encourages the completion of goals and objectives.

    Sitting down with feedback is also a great time to discuss future opportunities within a role, which will definitely perk up motivation too!

    Going Back To Rediscover Their ‘Why’

    For the majority of us, our ‘why’ acts as an internal compass. We feel so much happier when we know what it is and use it every day to guide our actions. But there are times when it’s not about finding it – it’s about rediscovering it.

    Sometimes our ‘why’ can get swept under the rug when everything else in life overwhelms us. As practice managers, we should be looking to positively influence others to achieve or exceed their goals, and we can do this by working together with our team to discover what truly motivates them to do their best. One-on-one, or as I like to call them, heart-to-heart discussions are also a great way to help your staff rediscover their ‘why’.

    It’s a wonderful time, too, for a bit of nostalgia and tell them again why they were chosen for the role. You might rekindle a bit of a spark in their eye once they remember how qualified, capable or competent they are at their job.

    Roster Changes & Timeouts

    If you’re in a situation where you might be toying with the idea of a rotating roster, it’s a great way to think outside the nine-to-five timeframe which can be a hugely effective way to boost productivity and reclaim motivation.

    If you’re not in a position to do that however, consider providing your staff with more flexibility and shift equality (yes, that’s actually a thing!). Studies have shown that workplace flexibility helps build staff morale, attracts minimal turnover and sees reduced absenteeism. It’s important to acknowledge staff requests for leave, but if you’re able to do a rotating roster, then all employees are equally exposed to particular shifts.

    Timeouts in the workplace are not a bad thing, as opposed to giving a toddler a ‘timeout in the naughty corner’ (God, I remember those days…). In this instance, think of the popular commercial for a particular chocolate bar – Have A Break, Have A Kit-Kat. Allow your staff to step out for fresh air, make and enjoy a tea or coffee in peace, or simply step away from their workspace to call a friend or their children.

    This also goes for what I call ‘Team Timeouts’ where you might all go out for lunch together or perhaps engage in some mini-golf, giant chess or laser tag after work.

    Value Their Ideas

    One of the biggest kickers to lacking motivation is not being seen as a value-added employee, so when there’s a team meeting ensure you allow everyone to input their own ideas and ensure they feel comfortable enough to make suggestions on projects and responsibilities.

    When they know you’re listening, you’ll be surprised how far that can actually go.

    What More Can You Do? SO MUCH MORE!

    There’s more to this topic than meets the eye…I could write so much more! So as a practice manager, what can you do personally to help re-motivate everyone?

    In a nutshell, it’s all about support and acknowledgement.

    These are the two biggest, and most important, factors that you need to take heed of. In other words:

    • Trust your employees to do their job – don’t micromanage them. Anyone being micromanaged can feel incompetent, and that’s not the goal here. The goal is to motivate them and encourage them in every way possible.
    • Support their goals, in and out of the workplace. This isn’t just about having meetings to find out how they want to move forward within their role, but about asking how their personal lives are going – if they’re training for a marathon, keep up to date and ask about training. If they’re renovating their home or building a cubby house, ask about the finer details like if they’ve decided on tile patterns or paint colour.
    • Provide an employee motivation platform. Connect with each other via a specified hub to engage in friendly competition, monitor progress against targets and celebrate top performances. It can be as simple as a Wattsapp or Facebook group chat, or as big as Blueboard or Spinify.
    • Keep up with staff appraisals. Acknowledge, acknowledge, acknowledge!
    • Set clear communication and a safe working environment. Being a transparent practice manager and providing a workplace where your staff feel comfortable and protected are key elements for your employees.

    Between employee burnout, work-life balance struggles and the global pandemic, times can be quite challenging to keep your team motivated. But knowing how to keep everyone engaged and satisfied leads to so many benefits, and it’s our job as practice managers to help navigate their inertia.

    I’d love to hear what you do at your clinic to keep your team motivated, get in touch today and share your thoughts, ideas and suggestions!

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